Quill or feather mites??! Picture

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by klesoine, Nov 19, 2009.

  1. klesoine

    klesoine Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 11, 2009

    This poor hen has parchment like stuff wrapped around her quills. I thought for a long time her feathers were chewed but I think it's some sort of mite. I've dusted with pyrethium several times as I've seen the wheat color lice on her skin. No signs of those but today I looked more closely and when I scratched the white stuff it came off like dry skin. Can you help me figure this out and what to do to help her?
  2. chickenlady

    chickenlady Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 28, 2007
    Stillwater, NJ
    When you say you dusted several times, what exactly do you mean? Did you dust every 7-10 days for a month? Did you dust once and then again in 2 months?
    If you saw lice, chances are you are looking at lice eggs. Some treatments do not kill the eggs, they hatch, lay more eggs, then those eggs hatch and lay more eggs. It is a vicious cycle. Some external parasites can go from egg to adult who lays eggs in four days. When treating for mites or lice, you need to apply treatment, and then reapply treatment in 7-10 days. I would re-apply a few times at 7-10 days apart until you see no remaining signs.
  3. klesoine

    klesoine Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 11, 2009
    Quote:Thanks for your reply. I have only treated this hen once in the past and only did it once again 7 days later. Do you know if pyrethium work on all lice? Would ivermectin pour on work? I'm seeing the parchment like wrap on her quills all over. Really, it's like thin paper that breaks off. It doesn't look like eggs.
  4. jadeflower999

    jadeflower999 Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 20, 2008
    Vancouver, Washington
    Jeez, I wish I could help, I've read you need to use Malathion for lice, maybe try that next if the Ivermectin or Permethrin isn't working? Good luck, hope the little lady gets better:)
  5. CTChick

    CTChick Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 5, 2009
    Parchment? Down by the base by the skin? Isn't this what the new feathers come in with ... birds groom this off, becomes the "powder" we are all familiar with (especially those of us with caged birds like cockatiels). I usualy find the area of the neck behind the head is where the birds cannot reach, they enjoy when I use my fingernails and pull this off for them.

  6. alicefelldown

    alicefelldown Looking for a broody

    Aug 18, 2008
    Do you think you could take a picture of the actual 'parchment'? That would go a long way in trying to diagnose the problem.
  7. jenjscott

    jenjscott Mosquito Beach Poultry

    May 24, 2008
    Southeast Arkansas
    It sure sounds like the feather covering on a new feather. I use to peel if off my macaw all the time. His feathers would grow out with 6 inches still incased in a "straw"
  8. bukbugack

    bukbugack Out Of The Brooder

    Oct 9, 2009
    L.I. New York
    Your description of the "parchment" stuff and the appearance of the bird suggests that the bird is just growing new feathers. Give the bird a good looking over, pulling back the feathers and looking at the skin to see if the lice are still there. Could be the lice are gone and she is just growing her feathers back.
  9. silkiechicken

    silkiechicken Staff PhD Premium Member

    Could be she just isn't into hygiene and isn't preening off the quill shafts.
  10. klesoine

    klesoine Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 11, 2009
    Thanks for all that wrote about the new feathers coming in. I'm new to chickens. I think upon closer inspection that that is exactly what is happening. She does like for me to peel them off. Her hygiene may be in question... this is weird to say but she is a special needs chicken, I think. There are a zillion of these shafts of parchment feathers all over her body with no sign of critters or egg sacks. I'll get a picture closeup just to be sure and post it tomorrow. What a great resource this site is.

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